Earlier today, JK Rowling posted a statement on her website which finally addressed how she feels regarding the decision to continue with Johnny Depp cast as a major role in her wizarding world.
Some fans have protested boycotting the Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them sequel if Depp reprises his role as Gellert Grindelwald.
The controversy stems from accusations his ex-wife Amber Heard laid out, proclaiming that allegedly Depp was "verbally and physically abusive" during their marriage. Depp has denied this, declaring her accusations "salacious false stories, gossip, misinformation and lies."
Until now, Rowling has remained silent on the subject but did today acknowledge that the reports “deeply concerned” her and others behind the production, and that she and director David Yates did indeed consider recasting Depp’s role.
In her statement, Rowling explained;
“For me personally, the inability to speak openly to fans about this issue has been difficult, frustrating and at times painful. However, the agreements that have been put in place to protect the privacy of two people, both of whom have expressed a desire to get on with their lives, must be respected. Based on our understanding of the circumstances, the filmmakers and I are not only comfortable sticking with our original casting, but genuinely happy to have Johnny playing a major character in the movies.”
“I accept that there will be those who are not satisfied with our choice of actor in the title role. However, conscience isn’t governable by committee. Within the fictional world and outside it, we all have to do what we believe to be the right thing.”
Warner Bros. said it supported the decision in its own statement, and director David Yates has previously spoken out in support of Depp reprising the role.
Fantastic Beasts 2 - officially titled Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald is due for release November 16, 2018.